Fulfilling the Promise of the American Dream

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The promises of the “American dream” are no longer fulfilled. One does not simply work diligently and expect to achieve success. A number of factors must be taken into consideration: natural talent, class, and most importantly, the ability to assimilate. The American economy today does not allow every citizen to be satisfied with his position. There is a clear distinction between the classes in America. The pursuit of happiness is limited to those who adapt and conform, as well as requiring a set of skills in order to remain competitive in the job market. In “Class in America: Myths and Realities,” Gregory Mantsios describes the myths and their corresponding realities in America. A myth that was given claims that any American, given the right opportunities, can become a successful millionaire through enough hard work, sacrifice, and perseverance (283). This is clearly presented as a fallacy that schools have told and media has portrayed. Evidence is provided to debunk this myth. Successful business magnates and millionaires are almost exclusively composed of persons originally from wealthy families with access to elite schools. If the myth had any truth, these “upper class” individuals would represented equally from people of all backgrounds; most would come from middle class families or lower. He argues that the reality is rather harsh: “class can accurately predict chances for both survival and success” (293). In the oratory speech by Stephen Cruz, he discusses the glass ceiling he personally experienced. Although he came from humble beginnings, he slowly seized the opportunities provided, and with natural talent, he achieved success envied by his peers. However, this success was not good enough for him; he has finished climbing the corporate ladder and cannot proceed due to his background. He was asked indirectly to assimilate and accept his already “decent” paycheck. Cruz was limited by the class he was born into. Patrick Buchanan argues the separation of

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